Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation

New skunk lock will douse would-be bike thieves with noxious chemical


After years of making us feel utterly sick with their criminal ways, bicycle  thieves could be about to get a taste of their own… medicine, with the all-new vomit-inducing bike lock.

The SkunkLock is the brainchild of San Francisco-based co-creators Daniel Idzkowski and Yves Perrenoud, in a bid to combat the city’s monumental bike theft problem – something Idzkowski had experienced first-hand.

The lock - which looks like any other U-shaped bike lock, save its black and white warning colours – is not only strong, but also filled with a pressurized chamber containing a specially developed noxious chemical, “formula D_1".

While serious bike thieves can cut through even the toughest of locks within a minute using various tools, when the SkunkLock is cut into by 30%, it sprays the chemicals, causing nausea and vomiting – and will force anyone who doesn't have asbestos nostrils and lungs to instinctively run away.

Skunk lock

“It’s pretty much immediately vomit inducing, causes difficulty breathing,” Idzkowski told The Guardian. “A lot of similar symptoms to pepper spray.”

The chemicals are reportedly compliant with regulations in most states and EU countries – and has been tested for its stomach-churning effectiveness at a range of distances.

“At two feet it was pretty bad. It was absolutely vomit inducing in 99% of people," said Idzkowski. "At five feet it’s very noticeable and the initial reaction is to move away from it. At 10ft it’s definitely detectable and very unpleasant.”

Of course, a thief could always return to the bike once they’ve discarded their ruined clothes and tried to scrub the persistent chemicals off their skin, but chances are they’ve already brought enough attention to themselves by vomiting all over the street and won’t want the hassle of trying again.

What’s next? A chain that strangles would-be thieves? A wheel clamp that bites their legs off? A bike lock that induces actual vomiting might seem extreme, but with the stolen bike market reportedly worth upwards of $350million, perhaps extreme measures have to be taken.

The project is currently being crowdfunded on Indiegogo, where a pledge of $99 will guarantee you a SkunkLock when it becomes available, hopefully in June 2017.



13 incredible things that were invented in dreams


This machine stops avocados going brown


This car's wheels are going to change driving forever


All the times Donald Trump has failed to condemn far-right extremists

This has gone on for some time

by Tom Victor
16 Aug 2017

Flight attendants share the 25 worst things passengers do

How many of them are you guilty of?

by Gary Ogden
16 Aug 2017

Obama's response to Charlottesville is now the most-liked tweet ever

Puts Trump's response to shame

by Emily Reynolds
16 Aug 2017

English accents have been ranked by sexiness - where is yours?

You lot up north will be happy

by Gary Ogden
16 Aug 2017

Unmissable TV shows Reddit says you have to watch before you die

From gritty dramas to kids' classics

by Emily Reynolds
15 Aug 2017

The surprising side-effect of spending just 5 minutes on Facebook

It only takes five minutes of Facebooking

by Emily Reynolds
15 Aug 2017

Uber is going to start charging you for making your driver wait

Your cab home's about to get a bit more pricey

by Carl Anka
15 Aug 2017

John Oliver takes down Trump over his comments on Charlottesville

Doing what he does best

by Gary Ogden
14 Aug 2017

This amputee has the best Tinder profile ever

You've gotta hand it to her

11 Aug 2017

Ginger emojis are finally coming!

Justice is finally being done

by Emily Reynolds
11 Aug 2017